In an email sent to supporters last night, James Parrish, Executive Director of Equality Virginia announced that he will be stepping down at the end of the year to lead the newly formed Virginia Values Coalition. Current Deputy Director Vee Lamneck will be elevated to lead Equality Virginia beginning January 1.
Parrish has worked for Equality Virginia since 2009 and in his email said of his new position with the Virginia Values Coalition, “my sole focus will be passing legislation to create a commonwealth where all people can live, work, and play free from discrimination regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity.”
The Virginia Values Coalition was formed last year that includes statewide and national organizations such as the ACLU of Virginia, National Center for Transgender Equality, HRC, and Freedom For All Americans and individuals across the Commonwealth.
The creation of the Virginia Values Coalition and Parrish’s move comes at a transformational moment prior to the 2020 General Assembly session as Equality Virginia is setting forth comprehensive nondiscrimination legislation to protect LGBTQ people in employment, housing, and public spaces. These would be legislative ‘firsts’ in the South.